Odds courtesy of OddsShark.com
Had this been a normal year, September 5 would have been the first full Saturday of the 2020 college football season and that would have completely overshadowed any UFC event. Alas, this hasn’t been a normal year by any standards and there are only a handful of lower-tier NCAA games. Thus, Saturday’s UFC Fight Night card from Las Vegas should draw more betting action than it normally would, and it’s headlined by a heavyweight bout between Alistair Overeem and Augusto Sakai.
The 40-year-old Overeem (46-18), from the Netherlands, is nearing the end of a legendary career – legendary even though he has not won a UFC title. However, the “Demolition Man” is a former Strikeforce and DREAM heavyweight champion as well as a one-time K-1 World Grand Prix champion. Overeem is one of only two fighters to hold world titles in both MMA and K-1 kickboxing simultaneously.
His lone UFC heavyweight title shot came at UFC 203 in September 2016 and he lost by first-round knockout to current champion Stipe Miocic; Overeem does hold several wins over former UFC heavyweight champions, though.
Overeem’s fights tend to end pretty early as only eight of his bouts have gone to decision. He comes off a second-round TKO victory (punches) over Walt Harris in May as a +120 underdog. Overeem, ranked No. 6 in the division, is a -155 favorite for Saturday.
Sakai, 29, is from Brazil and is 15-1 in his pro career with 11 of those wins by KO/TKO. His lone loss was by split decision to Cheick Kongo at Bellator 179 three-plus years ago. The UFC’s ninth-ranked heavyweight comes off a split decision win over Blagoy Ivanov in May. Sakai is priced at +125 for Saturday, marking his first time as an underdog since joining the UFC.
At light heavyweight, Ovince Saint Preux and Alonzo Menifield square off. If this pairing sounds familiar, it’s because they were supposed to fight last month, but it had to be postponed after Saint Preux tested positive for the coronavirus. The former University of Tennessee football player tested both positive and negative during the week leading to the fight, but the UFC wasn’t going to take chances and pulled the bout only hours before it was to begin.
The 37-year-old Saint Preux (24-14) was once a light heavyweight contender but is not ranked in the division and comes off a May split decision loss to Ben Rothwell. “OSP” is +105 for Saturday. Menifield (9-1), 32, also is unranked. His nine-fight winning streak to open his pro career was snapped in June by unanimous decision loss to Devin Clark. Menifield is a -135 favorite for Saturday.